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PD Dialysis and consitpation

By April 5, 2010 - 1:46pm
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Most articles I have read say consitpation is not often with PD dialysis paitents. I try to make sure I eat lots of fiber. I have to use a laxitive almost every day, sometimes twice a day. Anyone else struggle with this issue?

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I think dialysis patients must be the most patient people on the earth!

I'm glad you try to get a lot of fruits, veggies and grains in your diet. Have you ever seen a high-fiber food chart? There are some surprises on it, I promise. For instance, do you like avocado? One medium avocado has almost 12 grams of fiber in it. If you worked avocado into your diet on a regular basis, that might help with both the constipation AND the weight maintenance problem, since an avocado is rich in calories (from "good" fat, not "bad" fat.) Here's a chart of high-fiber foods broken into Category A (more than 7 grams fiber per serving), Category B (more than 3 grams fiber per serving) and Category C (less than 3 grams fiber per serving.) For instance, raspberries have more fiber than blueberries, and blueberries have more than carrots! I wouldn't have expected that! Here's the chart:


Don't feel bad about only walking 8 blooks at a time, 3 times a week! That's fabulous. Especially when you don't feel like doing much. If that's what you can do, then you should feel great about it. Maybe on a particularly sunny day you'll feel like doing 9 blocks, or you'll feel like starting to go 4 times a week. The most important thing is that you're doing something, and that does help.

How much water do you drink every day, Blessed577? Are you able to drink as much as you want, or does that contribute to the discomfort from the dialysis fluid in your peritoneal cavity?

From what I read, all of this contributes to all of this. In other words, it's a cycle, as you know: the lack of enough fiber may keep you constipated, the dialysis fluid keeps you feeling bloated, the constipation can cause the bowels to press against the catheter and interrupt drainage, which also keeps you feeling this way. I am glad that your doctor has a laxative they approve of, and I'm glad it helps. But I'm hoping that deliberately increasing your fiber might help you, too.

Please let me know if this information helps. And I have my fingers crossed that you will get your transplant soon!

April 8, 2010 - 9:20am

Hi Diane, Thank you for your post. Currently I have no diet restriction. I do try to get as much fiber in my diet with fresh fruits, veggies and grains. Exercise is difficult since I have such a low energy level due to dialysis. I walk but only about 8 blocks at a time, and this is about 3 times a week. One of the problems I think?? IS the fluid in my peritoneal cavity presses on my bowels. I get a lot of gas built up through out my bowels. Then I feel bloated and the cycle continues. I also struggle eating a enough to keep my weight up. Not much appeitie at times or to much pressure on my stomach. I am seeing my doctor & dialysis nurse this month. I have talked to them before and they just said to use the mirilax more often each day. I really hope to transplant soon (in one to two months), but if I had to do this for life I would be really depressed.

April 6, 2010 - 10:17am


I actually found several articles that say constipation IS a side effect of peritoneal dialysis. It happens due to restrictions on your diet and fluid intake and sometimes your medications.

Have you spoken with your doctor about this? Have you discussed how much fiber you are getting in your diet? Are you eating things like whole-grain bread and plenty of fruits and vegetables?

Are you able to get any exercise? That can also help with constipation.

Please call your health care provider's office and make sure they know that you are having constipation on nearly a daily basis and are having to use a laxative this often. They may have specific recommendations for you to follow. You will not be the first patient that has had this trouble, I promise. Will you do this for us? And then come back and let us know what the doctor or nurse says?

April 6, 2010 - 8:49am
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